Boost for SA Wine Industry as Blaauwklippen and Van Loveren partner

Thursday, 26 May, 2022
Blaauwklippen and Van Loveren
Blaauwklippen and Van Loveren are tying the knot through a strategic partnership aimed at enhancing their premium offerings.

From the left: Bonita Malherbe (National sales manager, Van Loveren) Phillip Retief (Managing director, Van Loveren Vineyards), André Markgraaff (Shareholder and chairperson of Blaauwklippen), Ben-Carl Havemann (Chief executive of Blaauwklippen) and Narina Cloete (Winemaker at Blaauwklippen).

The iconic wine estate and lifestyle destination Blaauwklippen Vineyards and leading family business Van Loveren Family Vineyards are tying the knot through a strategic partnership aimed at enhancing their premium offerings to the local market and specifically to accelerate fine South African wine offerings to the world market.

In what is described as a three-way winner – both for the partners and the country’s wine industry at large – the partnership is focussed on the production and distribution of their wine portfolios. Through increased premiumisation and a “best-of-strength-strategy”, - the partners will seek to unlock and enhance new opportunities for the Blaauwklippen wine portfolio.

Founded in 1682, the Blaauwklippen is the oldest wine farm in Stellenbosch. Van Loveren – a third-generation family business in the Robertson valley – is Africa's leading family-owned private wine business. The partners will expand vineyards, increase production capacity, and introduce new products to their premium portfolios.

Blaauwklippen is located at the foothills of the Stellenbosch Mountain and comprises 115 hectares – with 51 hectares of vine. In the heart of “The Golden Triangle” of the Stellenbosch Winelands, the farm’s terroir is part of an area widely recognised as the finest wine-growing sub-region in the country – specifically famous for the quality of the red wines.

In 2017, under new South African ownership, Blaauwklippen embarked on a comprehensive turnaround strategy to reclaim its position as one of the most iconic estates in the country. This included the relaunch of the entire premium portfolio, with a steadfast focus on quality and the revival of the farm's brand home and hospitality offerings.

“The partnership with the Retief family of Van Loveren will allow us to accelerate our brand and marketing plans and optimise our production capabilities,” says Blaauwklippen CEO Ben-Carl Havemann. “Innovation has been a cornerstone of the Blaauwklippen legacy for 340 years. We believe that Van Loveren is the ideal partner to help us champion new and better ways to share our story in more ways, with more expertise, at more locations throughout the globe”, Havemann stated.

For Van Loveren and the Retief family, this partnership marks their first official entry into the Stellenbosch Wine Region. Widely acclaimed and known for their premium and quality array of wines, they export their products to more than 68 countries and are the market leader in many categories.

“Stellenbosch is the premier recognised wine region in South Africa. As part of our diversification, growth and evolution, we believe that Blaauwklippen will be an exceptional addition to our growing portfolio and specifically our premium offering,” says Van Loveren MD Phillip Retief.

“Blaauwklippen can and should be one of the most widely celebrated and enjoyed wine brands. With our network and proficiency, we are excited about the potential of the brand to become a market leader in its own right”, Retief adds. “Aligned to our growth strategy, this partnership is a unique opportunity to invest in a wine brand, wine tourism, agriculture and an outstanding location,” he concludes.

The extent of working together will be done with the assistance of expert advisors to comply with relevant regulatory requirements.